How does Kumon differ from one-to-one tutoring?
The Kumon programmes aim to enable students to become independent by fostering in them the mind-set and skills for self-learning. The materials are created to allow students to progress naturally and develop academic ability according to the individual capabilities of each child.
Kumon Instructors do not 'teach' students in the conventional sense. It is their aim to guide students through the programmes, fostering in them a positive attitude towards study and good study habits, whilst pursuing the right level of study for each individual; assigning a suitable number of worksheets and amount of repetition to ensure students are motivated, but that they also fully grasp each topic block before moving on.
To enable students to develop the mind-set and skills to learn on their own, Instructors encourage them to find solutions on their own by carefully following the instructions on the worksheets. They are also guided to correct their own mistakes.
When each student begins the maths and English programmes, they are given a study projection. This is shared with the parent, as well as the student, giving them a realistic goal to work towards and ownership over their own development. This is a reflection of the progress level we want them to reach and by when. Instruction is then given in accordance with this individualised study projection.
Attending a Kumon study centre up to twice per week allows for observation time with the Instructor, so while they may not sit down with the child and teach them how to do the work, they will judge their competencies and guide the student to find the right answers on their own.
Instructors are then able to help students understand the process by which an answer is found, giving explanations and hints so the answer is still achieved by the student themselves.
In this way the Kumon Method of Learning develops academic ability, but also empowers students to take ownership of their own learning, increases their concentration and stamina, and builds their confidence that they are able to learn for themselves.